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TheScientificWorldJOURNAL
Volume 11 (2011), Pages 2257-2265
http://dx.doi.org/10.1100/2011/127894
Research Article

Importance of Emotional Competence in Designing an Antidrug Education Curriculum for Junior Secondary School Students in Hong Kong

1Department of Social Work and Social Administration, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
2Department of Applied Social Studies, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Received 28 December 2010; Revised 15 February 2011; Accepted 16 August 2011

Academic Editor: Joav Merrick

Copyright © 2011 Ben M. F. Law and Tak Yan Lee. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Adolescent substance abuse is a serious problem in Hong Kong. Antidrug education campaigns should aim at enhancing students' understanding of the effects of illegal drugs to themselves. Moreover, life skill training is important in helping adolescents face life's challenges without attempting to do drugs. A major component of life skill training is the promotion of emotional competence. The present study outlines the importance of emotional competence and adolescent development. For an antidrug education campaign to be effective, adolescents should be able to identify their emotions and understand their own emotion regulation mechanism. Likewise, they should be made aware of the consequences of their emotions and emotion-driven behaviors. Finally, the use of an inspirational story with a strong message against substance abuse to trigger emotions is recommended for designing an antidrug education curriculum. All these components are integrated in the newly developed curriculum of the P.A.T.H.S. Project in Hong Kong.